Sunday, May 5, 2013

Can You Still Shill in a Positive Review of a Book Critical of Your Industry?

I sure hope so!

I'd like to think Everett Bellamy - long-term administrator at Georgetown - didn't just convert to the opposing party with his review of Steven Harper's thoughtless diatribe for USA Today. Already, the fact that he published it in USA Today makes me think he's not shooting straight, because no one who's serious about anything publishes it in USA Today. That's like sentencing your words to death by stupid association only one shade lower than Yahoo! articles.

And then there's the intro sentence:

The Great Recession affected most sectors of the U.S. economy and most professions.

For the legal profession, it had a profound affect. 

Bellamy, you sneaky dog! A book that deals with pre-recessional structural economics and he frames it as a GREAT RECESSION STRIKES AGAIN story! Beautiful! And the use of "affect" instead of "effect" one sentence after correctly using "affect" shows a true mastery of the English language (because it is an affect in the medical sense?), much too brilliant for the fine editors at USA Today.

But my favorite part of the article is this little nugget:

Harper offers suggestions on dealing with the crisis. Candidly, some students should avoid law school altogether. Or, if they enroll, give more thought to the type of practice that best suits their aspirations. If they're uncertain, seek the advice of honest and forthright law school administrators.

Emphasis added for awesomeness. Honest and forthright law school administrators? Is he high? Did Harper write that?

Ha! Bellamy has been there, done that. He knows that for every honest and forthright law school administrator there are ten who are not but like to pretend. For him to pass along that advice to 0Ls is like telling a recovering crack addict it's okay to smoke from honest dealers or that gullible people should only respond to the honest Nigerian ex-warlord bankers who email.

I suppose in the Age of Law School Awareness, concern trolling is a noble deed. At least, that's what Ihope Bellamy and others (like the ABA "task force" on legal education) are going for.

Honest and forthright law school administrators. Good one, dean! While we're at it, let's find a virgin in Las Vegas and an abortion doctor at the Vatican. 

I suspect this is new some new strategy to keep prospective law students occupied on quests for mythical artifacts so that they don't, like, read a newspaper or talk to a shitlawyer. I applaud such ventures.

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